My Reasons

My Reasons

This Is Where It All Begins

This Is Where It All Begins

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Answers, and

Ben got into a kidney specialist and we FINALLY got some answers to these horrible attacks he has been having for the past four years. Lately they have been closer together and more severe. It has been so sad to watch and so painful for him to go through. We were so sure it was his gallbladder...wrong.

There is a tube that runs from your kidney to your bladder. In Ben's case, he has a random blood vessel in the way of that tube (from birth) that is pinching the tube and causing his kidney to lose function and slowly die. Yeah, kinda scary.

His kidney is more than double the size of his other one, and it is only functioning on about 25% of what it should be doing. Not good.

So, he has surgery scheduled for December 10th. Yup...two weeks away. 8 days before we drive to Idaho. The doctor wants to get down to business before any more damage can be done.
It will be a three hour surgery and he will stay overnight. The recovery is roughly two weeks before getting back to normal living.

It is kind of funny actually. Just the other day, we were driving past the hospital, and I told Ben that I hoped the next time we had to be there would be for the birth of this baby, and not for any other scary or terrible things. ha!

Neither Ben or I have ever had surgery or anything really major happen to us up until this year. We have both been pretty dang healthy people our whole lives. Now we are both spending the night in the hospital and going through surgery just 5 months apart. This is a year we will NEVER forget, but in some ways, wish we could.

They will be re-routing the tube that is blocked by the blood vessel. They are going to cut it and re-attach it to the other side of his bladder. Hopefully this will fix the problem and allow his kidney to shrink back to normal and start to heal.

We are happy to have answers. It stinks that it has gotten this bad, but at least there is a solution. It is also a good thing that we didn't discover it too late. That would result in him losing his kidney because, well, it would be dead.

It isn't a crazy huge life or death surgery, but it is no small thing either. It is a big deal to us. We are both nervous. I just hope all goes well and that Ben has a full recovery and never has to go through another attack again!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Reflections From A Thankful Heart

Thanksgiving is in just two days! I really love this holiday. Not especially because of the food, even though it is great, but I just like the feeling that comes with it.

There are so many things I am thankful for, but each Thanksgiving, I like to look back on the last year and think of the things I have learned to be even MORE thankful for.

So, here is my list of things I am more thankful for this year.

#1 Health....I don't think I need to elaborate on this one. Let's just say that the weeks I am completely healthy are gems to me.

#2 Insurance/Ben's job.....these things have been literal lifesavers for us this year. I am extremely grateful for both of them.

#3 Good friends....I spent a good 14 months without a good friend to be seen. That was right before we moved here. It was terrible and so lonely. We moved here and BAM...friends everywhere! I cherish all of my wonderful friends near and far. My friends have been a great source of happiness and support for me. I thank the Lord every single night for blessing me with so many wonderful people in my life.

#4. Visitors....I only see my family twice a year. My parents were never able to come visit us when we lived in California, and up until June, they hadn't been here either. This can be so hard for me. I am very close to my family and I get lonely for family easily. My mom was able to come here in June and stay for a week. Even though I don't remember much of it, she left her spirit here and our home feels more like home knowing that mom was here. Jolene also makes frequent visits to our home, and we look forward to each and every one like it was Christmas!
I LOVE having company in our home and it always leaves our home feeling happier and more full of love. I am so thankful for visitors.

#5. Ben....yeah I know, everyone says their spouse, but Ben has been my rock this year. We have had some great times together, lots of laughter, some rough times, some tears, and some wonderful bonding experiences. I feel closer to him than ever and I am so thankful for such a supportive, loving and always so tender husband.

#6. A home....this is our first home we have lived in since our marriage, and I absolutely love it. I love driving right into the garage, having a yard, having so much space, and having a cute home to decorate. It has been so much fun. I am very Thankful for a home, and especially the one we have now. I love the location, the ward we are in, the neighbors, the cute little porch, and just the whole package.

#7. Blogging, facebook, email, ect.....As mentioned earlier, I don't get to see family much, or my friends back home. It has been wonderful to feel so in touch with everyone via "cyber world." I am grateful to be able to reconnect with old friends, keep up with the new and current, and feel like I know what is going on with everyone on the days where I feel so far away. It is a great way to stay saine and somewhat adult while living in "kid world" 9 hours of the day.

#8 Pregnancy...I have never been a fan of pregnancy. I am a huge fan of what you get out of it in the end, but I really do not enjoy the journey. It is so uncomfortable.
Now, I don't take much for granted. Hearing the heartbeat is all the really matters to me now. I am VERY thankful to be pregnant at this time and I am also thankful for a wonderful and caring doctor who has been there through it all.

So there it is folks. Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Peace. Love. Happiness. And Pumpkin pie!

Monday, November 23, 2009

What Happened?

Lately, I have looked at my "little" girl that will be turning five exactly a month from today, and I ask myself..."what happened?"

The past few months, Mary has really grown up in a lot of ways. She is in a "do it yourself" phase, and it involves everything. Truly.

For example...

Mary frequently gets Sam ready for bed. We don't ask her to do this, she just does it. She gets his clothes off, puts them in the dirty clothes. Gets his night time diaper on him. Puts his p.j.'s on him, and sometimes she even puts toothpaste on his toothbrush for him. ha!

She can actually clean her room. She organizes all of her toys, hangs up her clothes, and even sorts things by type or color. It is not the normal, put stuff in the closet or under the bed. She truly cleans her room to the point where I don't have to do any "touch-ups." It is great.

We took the training wheels off her bike the other day, to teach her how to ride her bike. Last night, she wanted them back on. Ben and I were busy, so we told her to wait. An hour later, we went to the garage. Mary was out there with the tool box, and the tools. She had literally screwed her training wheels on all by herself. It was amazing.

We took her skiing for the first time this season. She rode the chair lift for the first time and did great. Ben was so excited. I took a picture of it, but I guess the camera or my fingers were too frozen by that point.

When JoJo was here, there was a day I was not home when they came back from gymnastics. Jolene said that Mary set the table, got out the peanut butter, jelly and bread and made lunch all by herself. Crazy! She has done this SEVERAL times since then.

Getting out lunch items.

Making hot cocoa "almost" by herself. We have to draw the line when there is boiling water involved.

(above) Today's lunch set up and made by Mary.

She is really into art right now, but she wants no help. She has come up with some very creative projects. I love the ones where she spells stuff without help. I don't have the heart to correct her yet. It is just too cute.

She is now doing her own hair. The ponytail is her favorite, which is just fine with me, because I don't have to battle her anymore about me pulling too tight.

She gets her own snack out while I am laying Sam down for his nap. Sometimes this means dragging the stool over to the pantry, climbing the shelves and then getting the food she needs. She will then put her own DVD in for quiet time, make her own little bed, and settle down until I can get back to her.

She is really into playing "store." This weekend, after helping at a craft botique, we came home, and Mary set up her own Lemonade stand. She made the Lemonade herself and the signs. It cracked me up.

My favorite part are the signs. She writes it exactly as you say it.

She teaches Sam all sorts of tricks. Today, it was how to slurp your long spaghetti noodles. She has also taught him the splits, how to do a bridge, how to get his socks off, and how to open the sliding door. She is also in the process of teaching him how to get in and out of his carseat himself.

She gets herself dressed everyday, and spends a good amount of time "accessorizing" at her "Diva Corner" in her room. I must say, she can match like none other. I was not that way as a child, and I LOVE the fact that Mary has such a great balance of being girly, sporty, fun and dirty and pretty.

While grocery shopping, Mary makes her own list before hand (of things she knows I will "happen to forget") and she brings it to the store with us. She usually gets the produce for me, and makes sure I never forget to put money in the red bucked outside by the bell man.

Lately, she is very into how the car works. I honestly think, if she was tall enough, she would know enough to be able to drive.

She tells Ben and I if we don't match, or if our shirts aren't "cute."

She has asked me several times if she can help feed, change and rock the baby when it comes. I believe she really will do all of these things too. My answer is always..."you bet!" And yes, she has now learned that the baby does not come out the belly button. It is much earlier than I wanted her to know, but she would not let it go. I pray that she doesn't start asking about Santa in too much detail.

When JoJo was here, we had a really warm week. Jolene was planning on it being a lot more cold, so she only brought a few t-shirts. She ended up having to wear the same shirt two days in a row. I didn't notice at all, but I guess that afternoon, Mary walked into her room where JoJo was, and without looking up, or really even talking to anyone in particular, she sighed and said to herself in a matter-of-fact kind of way "same shirt," and continued on her way.

I still can't think about that without laughing my brains out.

This last Sunday was the primary program. Mary knew her part forward, backward and inside out, but that isn't what mattered to me. I just hoped that she would be able to stand there and actually talk.

She surprised us all by standing tall, looking at us, and saying her part (with some help due to stage fright). I was a very proud parent at that moment. That is a BIG DEAL for Mary. She can be so shy in public and she HATES attention (I wonder where she got that from). She did a great job.

She has been in a gymnastics class with 5-6yr olds since August. The coach was very worried about "maturity" level and Mary being able to jive with the older girls. I just talked to the coach today about Mary's progress, and they are very pleased with Mary's ability to get along with and keep up with the other girls. I am very proud of her. There have been some tears shed because of the difficulty of the class, but no tears about not getting along with the other girls. In fact, they have a blast out there talking, giggling and comparing nail polish and earrings (and working their buns off). No one notices or talks about the age gap. She still loves the sport, and comes out grinning every day. She has been a good team-mate and friend.

I could go on and on and on about all of her do-it herself things she has been doing, but I guess my point is that my little girl is a not so little girl anymore. It is bitter/sweet to me. There are a lot of perks to it all, but it also makes me a little sad.

It is giving me hope that there will actually be a time in our lives, where the kids will be able to fend for themselves, and I will be able to focus on other things about them aside from the physical non-stop tending to and caring for. It will be so wonderful.

At the same time, I am also beginning to feel the pain of not having a rewind button.

Like I said...bitter/sweet.

I am so glad she still loves to snuggle with me at night, and she still has a her little chubby hand for me to hold.

I don't care what anyone says if girls or boys are harder, more emotional,less emotional, better, worse, smarter, slower,blah blah blah. Oh, that is so annoying. I have one of each, and I love them just the same. And their differences are what make them so special. People are constantly asking me which gender is easier and what gender I am hoping for. I will be perfectly content with either gender, because I love both the same. Each gender has special perks and sweet blessings that come with them.

I love my little girl with all of my heart and she is my precious little buddy forever. I am glad I have such a fun little helper by my side. Why, oh why do they have to keep growing?

Thursday, November 19, 2009


So, in my last post, I elaborated a little on my "walking hormone" slump I have been in. Life had just seemed so blah, lonely and slow lately. Not to mention, my moods have been ALL over the place this pregnancy like never before and the exhaustion has been at its absolute worst. It is incredible.

I have almost hit the 12 week mark, and I have to say that these past few days, life seems SO MUCH BETTER! I can feel the energy slowly seeping back into me. I am still very tired, but I am not dead on my feet. The dreams have calmed down, so I am actually getting a good sleep. It is really nice. I am feeling a lot more ups than downs, and if it all goes as it usually does, my moods and my hormones will be right back to normal within the next week or two. Luckily, with my past pregnancies, I am not a walking hormone the whole nine months. I am grateful for that. Three months is bad enough. I am already feeling a drastic change and it is WONDERFUL!

I am going to have a rockin' awesome girls night out tomorrow night with great friends. We all seem to be overdue for some girl party time. We are going to New Moon, and I am very very excited.

Ben and I are going on a date, yup, an official pay a babysitter, do something fun, eat something yummy, just the two of us, date on Saturday night. Ben is planning it, and I am really excited to just spend some good time alone with him. His schedule with work and school has been CRAZY this past week or two, and it seems like we don't have a moment to talk or just to "be." That will be slowing down now, much to my joy and his relief.

Our date will be just after taking Mary snow skiing for the first time this season and then seeing Shaina, a good friend who is in Denver right now. ;)

Next week, Ben has no early morning meetings and way less late night conference calls. We have friends coming from out of town to spend Thanksgiving with us, and the good neighbors will also spend Thanksgiving with us. It is going to be a week of fun and celebrating. My best friend in the whole world is also going to be here and will be shopping Black Friday with me. That in and of itself, is an experience. I went for my first time last year, and it was a blast. I get a kick out of all of it.

I am buying the beginning of all of our Christmas/Birthday presents today, and I am SO excited. The lists are done, now is the fun part. I am a major gift giver. It is my love language. So, I absolutely love Christmas shopping and planning.

In about a week, our house will be all things Christmas...including the tree. WAHOO! I caved in early this year, and the Christmas music is already playing. It is taking all restraint necessary for me not to put all of the decorations up right now. We just have some dang cute Thanksgiving stuff out right now, and it would be weird to take it all down before Thanksgiving.


I found an incredible deal for Ben to get a plane ticket back home after Christmas (to get back to work) so I get to STAY WITH MY FAMILY IN IDAHO FOR AN EXTRA WEEK!!!!!!!! I only get to see my family twice a year, so this is a big deal to me. I was only going to be able to see them for three days, now it will be one week and three days!

Life isn't perfect, of course, but it is much better. I am looking forward to the next month or so. Lots of great things are coming up. One of the best things of all will be that I will be done with the first trimester, and hopefully this baby will continue to stay with us and let us know if it is a he or a she within the next little while. (depending on how many ultrasounds I will continue to have).

Speaking of ultra-sounds, I guess I should let you all know the update with Ben.
We thought he was having problems with his gallbladder, so he went in for an ultrasound. His gallbladder was just dandy, but his kidney was enlarged. His blood test also showed that there is a problem with his kidney. He had a CAT scan on Monday. The kind where they put iodine stuff in you via and IV to make it all show up better. We are awaiting the phone call any second now to get the results from that. We are a little nervous, but staying positive that it will be something easy to fix (even though it may be painful for Ben) kidney stones or something. We are hoping for the best.

I am just grateful that life is ever changing, because sometimes, a change is all we need.

Monday, November 16, 2009

When church is cancelled because of snow.

I was shocked when we got the phone call. Church was canceled due to just 4 inches of snow and some ice on the roads. I think it is so funny that we live at 7000 feet right next to the Rockies, but for some reason there is a serious fear of snow and ice here. Oh well, I guess it makes for some fun cozy days at home. I was so sad about the primary program being postponed, but we made the best of it, and we really
did have a very fun day. It ended up being just what the doctor ordered.

My due date wasn't too bad after all. I went through some blog posts during that time that I haven't read since I wrote them, I looked through my special heart box, and I talked a little with Ben about some very special feelings and revelation we have been given related to the baby. I ended the day with a full heart and a lot of gratitude.

Mary was out in the snow for almost 4 hours total, dark and light. She was in heaven. There is just something about playing in the snow that makes you smile. I even got out there and attempted a snowman. The snow wasn't quite snowman making material, but I did get the bottom half done. It brought back so many childhood memories.

Ben and Mary were successful in making their first ever igloo. It is pretty neat.
Most of the pictures are dark, because they finished it at night. If you look hard enough, you can see them in the igloo.

I was just happy to finally have snow and to start feeling the holiday spirit inching its way through my body. I have been battling a serious case of the grumpies lately. I am just sick and tired of being sick and tired. I am also pretty dang lonely. I get VERY homesick around this time of year, and it seems that my peeps have all gone missing. I heard a Christmas song on the radio today, and I blasted it. I sang every single word. It was so refreshing.
I am ready for some action around here. Anyone else out there feel like the world just kind of shut down around you? I can't go to playgroup (due to the day and time), and I don't think I have hung out with any friends for well over a month, my family is so far away, and the blogging world seems to have slowed down as well. Where did everyone go? BOO! Thank goodness for my sweet husband who is planning a date for us this weekend which includes going to New Moon. I had planned on going to it with my good friend Mel (the midnight first showing), but midnight is not the best time for me with this pregnancy. So, Ben stepped up. What a guy. Willing to suffer through it, just for me and my boobing around phase. I am very excited.

Let's get on with the holiday parties, the movies, the goodies, the decorating and the cheer! I think I may decorate early this year. What the heck, once you feel it, you feel it. And I'm feelin' it folks! I am ready to par-tay!

I am so pumped for Thanksgiving next week. It will finally mark the end to this BLAH, boring, lonely, sludge phase I am in. That will be the beginning of the Holiday non-stop madness for us, lots of friends and family, a full house, full hearts, decorating, excitement and go, go, go. I CAN'T WAIT! I am more than ready. The countdown is on! YIPPEE!

Shoveling the driveway turned into making a sledding run for Tyler and Mary. They were all smiles.

Tyler got out his "Jeep" and pulled Mary on the sled. She laughed so hard she could hardly breathe.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Due Date

Tomorrow, November 15th, is my due date for the baby I lost in June when I was 16 weeks along.

I didn't think it would be too hard, just because I am expecting again, and it fills me with inexplicable joy. It has been very healing.

However, it has actually been a little rough for me. It has come as a surprise really.

It is just hard knowing what could have been. There are so many pros and cons, but no matter how I look at it, it cannot be changed and I have learned to work through that and accept it.

The biggest struggle for me I guess, has been the fact that I could be having my baby any time now, but instead, I am back to square one. I haven't been that sick at all (which is a first for me and SOOO wonderful) but no matter what, pregnancy just makes me feel icky and so so so tired. This is my first pregnancy where there is a lot of cramping and very sore tendons. I will take it over morning sickness any day, but it does nothing good for the paranoia. It is a little frustrating to lie there on the couch feeling so exhausted and blah, knowing that I already did this part not too long ago, and I could have been done with it and reaping the precious rewards any day now. It has been harder than ever to look at infants lately. I haven't had any problem with that, but it is rough right now. I am sure it will end soon.

There are some good things though. We are now able to have a great Thanksgiving with two wonderful families coming over. I am SOOOO excited for that! We will also be able to travel for Christmas and be with family and loved ones. Both of which, would not happen if I were to be giving birth tomorrow.

There is also the comfort in knowing that is just wasn't the right time for us or the baby. Having the baby tomorrow was not in accordance with the Lord's will. That brings me great peace.

Another hard thing is the domino effect losing the baby has had on me. I have been sick for the majority of 7 months now with my previous pregnancy severe morning/all-day sickness and various illnesses that all trickled down from the events of the day I lost the baby. Some of which, were incredibly hard and lasted a long time, some if which I still battle along with this pregnancy. Some of which I have suffered silently, because I don't want to feel like the "girl who always has something." Mono, severe anemia (actually, well beyond severe), swine flu, ear infections, colds, aches, exhaustion, are just a few of the wonderful trickle effects. It has been much much much harder than I have let on, and it has effected the way I am handling this pregnancy. I just don't have much spunk or energy left. It is hard to deal with even the smallest aches and pains and blahs, because it has been so long! You would think my tolerance would be greater now, but it actually is getting shorter. I am down to my last reserves, and I haven't had time to re-fill them before the next thing hits. My body has been through enough to last several years, in just 7 short months. I just need time to get some spunk back, and then deal with it all. The road has been very rough, but we have traveled it.

A good thing though, is that I have been able to have more ultrasounds, which means I have been able to see my baby more than normal. I also don't take ANYTHING for granted when it comes to this baby. I am a paranoid mess, but I have a new understanding of what miracle must really take place in order for a baby for form, grow and mature in the womb, and to have it all work out in the end. It is amazing. It has brought me closer to my Savior as I plead every night for this baby of mine and try to have faith that all will be well.

I am so grateful the primary program tomorrow and especially that the theme is eternal families. It will be a good source of comfort. It will be nice to have this date done and over with. I am going to feel what I feel and let things sink in, and it will be hard (I may even have to cry in public) and then I am going to do my best to say goodbye and put it behind me.

After all, I have a new life forming inside of me, and I know and feel that it is a very special and precious being inside of me. This is no ordinary pregnancy for me, and this is no ordinary child. I have been blessed to have my heart tied to my babies heart (even if I tried not to) and to feel the special spirit inside. This child is one of hope, comfort, miracles, healing and peace. A cherished gift from above. A healing thread to a broken heart.

Thrills on Wheels

The only picture I have from when JoJo was here. Pathetic, I know. I love this picture though, because it shows the lengths she will go to in order to keep the kiddos happy. Such a great grandma.

Yesterday, Ben had a good chunk of time off work, so we pulled out the bikes.
He got Mary's bike all fixed up, I added a cute little bell to it, and we TOOK OFF THE TRAINING WHEELS.
I always picture learning to ride a bike as being some quality daddy and me time. My dad taught me and my siblings to ride a bike, and it just stuck in my mind.
Thankfully, Ben had the same idea.
With Mary on her bike, and Ben running up and down the road, she made some great progress! She did it on her own a few times, and gained some confidence.
It was crazy for me to watch her and how grown up she looked. So weird.
It was adorable though and the "lessons" will continue once the snow melts.

Getting some pointers.

Try and try again.

Little Sammy LOVES riding Mary's old Dora tricycle, but he is so small, he hasn't been able to reach the pedals. It hasn't stopped him though.
He will start at the top of the driveway, push off, lift his feet in the air and zoom down the driveway, he will turn just before flying into the road (his favorite part, my heart-attack part) and zoom down the sidewalk until he slams in a garbage can. (second favorite part, second heart attack for me) At this point he is laughing is head off.
This is the part where I come to him, unwrap the dog leash I have tied to the bike, and pull Sam back up the sidewalk and up the driveway, so he can do it all over again.
I think we did this well over 30 times yesterday.

When daddy got home, he jimmy-rigged the tricycle and we put Sam on it. His feet reached the pedals! Sam tried it out a few times, and with a HUGE grin on his face and a voice full of excitement, he looked up at me and said, "I CAN REACH MOMMY!"
All of my pregnant hormonal self started holding back tears and I just clapped.

Sam has talked non-stop about his bike and how he can pedal. He and Mary both went into the garage once it got too dark outside, and rode their bikes for another hour.
So cute.

See the dog leash wrapped around the bike. It saved my back!
Sam was so happy in this picture, because he could finally reach the pedals.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Star-crossed lovers

Oh man...the song playing is just too perfect. hehehe

So, since the last post about our gerbil Oreo, the following has taken place.

We monitored her very closely for a day or two, to make sure she was o.k. and would live, after being in a dogs mouth and being rolled around in the snow. She did just dandy.

Three days later, I walked downstairs and found her standing in the middle of the rug looking at me. She was taunting me...just daring me to try to get her. I spent the next 20 minutes catching her and getting her back in the cage. I covered the cage with pillows.

One day later...we were sitting on the couch and we heard a bang. Oreo somehow got through the pillows and was out of the cage again. She was making a run for it. Ben caught her with his amazing lizard catching reflexes (learned from childhood) in about 2 seconds. We put her back in the cage. We covered it with the sled from the garage this time.

We then discussed why she could possibly want out after the trauma that happened to her. We came to one, true, passionate, undying, everlasting love. It is the only thing that would drive something to be so crazy and so daring. She was in love, and the only thing she could possibly be in love with would have to be Eddy. The last standing mouse. The one and only, guts of steel, sly, clever, and oh so sneaky Eddy. Dang Eddy.

The only thing is...we hadn't seen any mice in our house for a few days, and we we hoping that we had finally ended our problem (after killing 25+ mice before we stopped counting).

Nope...the "scratch, scratch, munch, munch," has started up again. Eddie has returned.

Grandma JoJo arrived on Tuesday. Wednesday morning she announced (laughing and in good humor) that she had a visitor in the night. A nice little mouse that came upstairs, got in her suitcase, went past her clothes, ate through a plastic bag, and proceeded to munch on her herbal drink packets. AAARRRGGG! Yeah, I felt like a real winner. That was our fist experience with a mouse being upstairs. Poor JoJo. Dang Eddy.

After a million apologies and a million "it is o.k., no harm done" replies, we set out the mouse traps that night.

The trap went off, the food was gone from it, no mouse. Dang Eddy.

The next night, we arrived home after dinner to find Oreo standing in the middle of the rug staring at us. I am sure this time she was cursing us and everything we stand for. Ben wasn't there to help us with his amazing skills, so it was up to me, Sam, Mary and JoJo (who doesn't enjoy to touch gerbils, and I don't blame her). We cornered, baited, chased, poked with a broom, moved furniture, and every other thing you can imagine, but nothing worked. Finally, JoJo grabbed a magazine and the next time Oreo went running across the room, she scooped her up in the magazine. JoJo then panicked and with a shriek, flipped the magazine. Oreo flew up into the air, and somehow zoomed far enough to make an arch and land right in the cage. It was quite the flight. We about died laughing.

The sled didn't work, so we then covered the cage with a towel. Two seconds later, the towel was down and had 3 holes chewed through it. rats! (no pun intended)

Last night, we heard Eddie munching his way through whatever, and he was squeaking like crazy. He was sending his love song out to Oreo, his one and only. He was letting her know that the house was almost done and the food storage was going well...really well. What do you know, about an hour later, out of the corner of my eye, I saw Oreo in a mad dash running from the room! She was going to be with Eddie if it was the last thing she could do. I could see the red gleam in her eyes.

We eventually caught her again, after a valiant fight, and put her back in the cage. I can only imagine what must have been coming out of her mouth. We then watched as over and over again, she jumped and scratched, trying to get out. The other two plump gerbils just sit there and watch her, like two little old ladies sitting on the porch drinking lemonade and gossiping about everything non-important in the world. They look at her like she is crazy. And she is...crazy in love. We put a bigger towel over the cage this time and it is out of reach.

We also caught two mice with one trap last night. Both were too small to be Eddie, but small enough to know that there is some pro-creation going on behind our walls. Eddie will not surrender. He will make up for what we have taken from him, and he is doing it very quickly.

And so the story continues. Oreo and Eddie will forever be trying to be together. Eddie will continue to get food, make his home for he and Oreo and re-create his colony. Oreo will continue to run in her wheel ALL night to get fast enough and strong enough to reach him. And one fine day (or most likely night), they will re-unite, and the world will see, for the first time in history, a mouse-gerbil baby...or 20 of them. Will they be called a mouerble, or a gerouse, only time will tell. But, one thing is certain, that will be the day we will declare our surrender and bomb the house.
Dang Eddie.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Say What?

We are having a BLAST this week with grandma JoJo here. It is wonderful to have someone to talk to during the day, and the extra helping hands during these "exhaustion" days are a great perk also. I can't complain though. I am feeling great aside from being tired, and I will take that any day. Once you have experienced horrible morning/all day sickness (three times for me), you will take almost anything in its place. I even remember one time contemplating if I would eat dog poop in order to get rid of the nausea, and I think I actually decided that I would.

So, as we were at Kohls shopping today (I am in the can't fit old clothes, but can't fit maternity, phase) grandma JoJo graciously told Mary and Sam they could each pick a toy.

Sam grabbed a little tractor truck, and I shopped around while Mary was changing her mind every 10 seconds in the toy section with JoJo. I figured she would end up with a puzzle, a stuffed animal, or some doll with a horse.

Was I ever shocked when she came running up to me with the weirdest toy I have ever seen in my life. It said "Bakugan" on the package. I asked her several times is she was sure she wanted the bauhaghan, backagon, bahooga thingy. She was VERY sure.

So, we came home with these little balls of plastic and no one knew how the heck to open them. I spent a good 15 minutes poking, shaking, prodding, picking and eventually getting out a knife and working on the thing. Grandma JoJo read, re-read, and re-re-read the package for any info on how to open the dang things.

We finally gave up just as Mary chucked hers onto the wood floor, and BANG, the dang thing popped right open! Ah Ha, that must be it. So we all continued to throw them onto the floor and watch them pop open until one finally broke. I was ticked. Who makes a toy out of plastic that you have to chuck onto the floor?

It wasn't until 45 minutes later that I noticed there were cards in the package, and I soon realized it was a game!? I read that you roll these things onto a card and they just pop open. Yeah right! After all we did, rolling the thing would open it, sure.

Alas, we tried it and whadda ya know, they all popped right open. So, so, so weird. Although, one of them pops open a little funny, due to my knife prying. oops. Go me.

I have been watching Mary and Sam fight over and over and over again for the past hour regarding who gets to play with these toys. I just can't believe it. They love these things.

Now I am learning that these are on the "hot item" list for this season and lots of stores are out of them with LONG waiting lists. Geeze, I must really be behind. I though I was going to be the big cheese mom of the year for getting Mary a Leapster. Little did I know, I should be buying these buka-whatever plastic balls instead!

j/k Mary is actually going to LOVE the leapster, I have no doubt.
It just cracks me up that no matter how much I ask and observe, I can't figure out what really floats her boat. I never in a million years, would have bought these strange plastic toys with weird cartoon people on the package...straight out of China for sure. Can't wait to see what's next.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Miracle Ultrasound

My Dr. appointment was today, and I had my third ultrasound. The doctor knows me well enough by now, to know that he should just get on with it, and talk later. The anxiety almost kills me....literally. My blood pressure today (taken before the ultrasound) was 25 points higher than it has ever been in my entire life. It was well above normal for anyone. I was told not to worry unless it stays that way up until the next appointment, then we may have some problems. Right.

But, I am not focusing on that at the moment.
About the ultrasound....

The picture on the screen was a HUGE difference from just two weeks ago. I was completely shocked, as was Dr. Weary. It was amazing! The baby totally took off and grew a ton in just two weeks. It not only grew the normal amount, but more than doubled that! That could explain why I haven't been able to keep my eyes open. (in all of the excitement, I completely forgot to ask about my iron levels, oops) Really, that is some serious growth in just 14 days. The baby and I are back to being on track with the pregnancy. I am nine weeks along, and my due date is back to June birthday. Hip Hip Hooray!

The baby was going crazy in there, and we got some awesome pictures. It was moving so fast, that the doctor had to get several pictures to try to get all of the features in. Dr. Weary said that in all of his career, he has never seen fingers so well defined in an ultrasound as early as nine weeks. You could literally see every single one as clear as day. My baby was waving to me and telling me not to worry so much and to send dad, Mary and Sam a big hello.

I completely and whole-heartedly connected with my baby today. It has every shred of my heart now. There is no turning back.

I have been trying not to get to attached, out of fear of losing this child. I have done a great job until today. It was just too wonderful of an experience and the pictures were so clear. Dr. Weary just kept looking and looking. He was so excited with how clear the features of the baby were. He even laughed at one point when the baby just went nuts. He looked like a kid with a new toy. It was like the baby was looking right at us and totally showing off.

I know this was a gift from above. I was blessed to see, so incredibly clearly and accurately, my little baby. It was just what my heart needed, even though I didn't realize it before the fact. It is amazing how healing it was. It was not a normal 9 week ultrasound as far as clarity, and the doctor and I both knew that. It was well above and beyond. The baby measured nine weeks, but the features were just amazing. The look of shock on Dr. Weary's face, clearly matched mine. I believe in miracles, and I witnessed another one today.

Heaven forbid I lose this child. My heart couldn't do it. Not after today. This baby is mine, it belongs to us. It belongs to my heart.

The doctor said that the appointment could not have gone better. There are a few things around the baby that, if they show up again at my next appointment, could become a big concern. But for now, he said not to worry and to enjoy the pictures. Of course I will worry, but that just comes with the package.

My heart is so full today. I am just so happy. I saw the heart beat once again. And to me, that is all that matters.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Pregnancy update

I realized tonight, that I haven't done a pregnancy update for a while. So here it goes. It is a long, so don't feel like you have to read it all. I just have a new vision of some things, and I am not going to pass up a hunch to record anything that has to do with this pregnancy or this baby of mine.

I am 9 weeks along although there is some question in that now.
The baby is measuring 2 1/2 weeks small. The doctor said to assume that my dates were off by 2 1/2 weeks, but he is not going to just let it slide by either. That is small enough that he will be monitering it.
I know my dates were not off, especially not off by over 1/2 a month! I got the postitive preg. test 2 days before I even thought I could take the test. Nope..dates were not off. Dates were right on.
That only means one thing, the baby is small...pretty darn small. And yes, that worries me, a lot.

The next ultrasound is Tuesday. Just two more days for me to freak out. I just want to hear the heartbeat again. That is all I need. Come what may, I just want to hear the heart beating.

As far as how I am feeling.
I am way better off than I have ever been with a pregnancy as far as being nauseated and sick. I only get nauseated at night, and it really is nothing to complain about. Especially compared to my previous dry heaving, nauseated to the point of wanting to die for weeks on end, pregnancies. The nausea that I do have however, did creep up right on time. 8 weeks. Same as my previous pregnancies. That also tells me that my dates were not off. I beg the Lord every night to PLEASE just let me have an easier pregnancy. I have been sick with various things (all domino effects of what happened in June) for almost 7 months now and it can get very hard at times.

So, I just want one small break. I am so grateful for the tender mercies of the least up to this point. He has blessed me with a nice pregnancy this far. My fingers remain crossed.

I am VERY, VERY, VERY tired. I am going to have the doctor check to see if I may still be anemic. Believe it or not, after the events of this summer, I haven't had my blood count checked since my last appointment in June where I was declared, "beyond anemic..well beyond." We are talking almost 15 points below the severely anemic line.

I am a lot more hormonal then with my past pregnancies. It has been annoying, but it makes me happy to know that my hormones must be changing, which means that I must still have a baby living inside me. I have days where I am irritated at anyone, everyone, anything and everything. And the next second, I am happy as can be. I am still pretty weepy as well. It does not help with my paranoia about this pregnancy.
Poor Ben. Poor, poor Ben.

My cravings haven't been very severe. The only one that will not go away is my craving for red meat. I would eat steak every day if I could. I can't get enough of it. We are major chicken eaters in our home. We eat a LOT of chicken. I am still trying to gag my way through making chicken for the family, but what I really want is a nice, juicy, flavor filled, medium, mushroom sauced, steak....and dutch oven potatoes. ;) Again, makes me wonder about my iron level. I will gladly get those levels up by eating red meat, I just don't think my heart or arteries would be very happy. And no, I will not eat liver, I don't care how many doctors tell me to.

I have still been able to work out as usual. It kills me to actually get to the gym, because I am so stinkin' tired, but once I am there, and begin working out, I actually feel a lot better and get in the groove. I always walk out of there feeling energized and happy...for about an hour. Then I am starving and exhausted. I hope this one lasts for a long time. I mentally and physically just need to work out. It keeps me going.

I think that is about it for now. My faith is really being tested with this baby inside of me. I am trying so hard to have the "it is in the Lord's hands and all will be well" attitude, but dang, I just worry so much. The space of time where the doctor is looking for the heartbeat up until he finds it, just about kills me every time. I can hardly stand it. Then I am good for a few days, and the worry begins all over again. Oh man. Week 16 will be the week of Christmas. I will be surrounded by family and loved ones. I just hope that I don't end up running to the nearest OB to get a heartbeat on Christmas Eve. I think that if I can get past that week, I will be able to relax a little more.

On another note.
My due date with our last child is coming up this month. It is the 15th.
I can feel it drawing near. It is like my body memory hasn't let it go. I can feel the nesting instinct in me starting up, and the nervousness/excitement. It was weird going to baby showers and knowing that mine could have been somewhere in there. And I will admit, I was a little jealous and kind of sad to see all of the adorable gifts everyone got from my incredibly creative and crafty know, those one-of-a kind type things. It felt so un-natural not to be in on it all. However, I was and am VERY happy for all of my friends that have had and are having babies right now, and I had a great time at all of the showers. My turn will come, just a lot later than planned.
This weird feeling of the upcoming due date has been very unexpected and kind of hard at times. Not to mention that I flipped the calendar to November, only to find stars and hearts all over the due date. It stunk to cross them out, but at the same time, I smiled as I remembered my baby inside of me right now. That alone, does make everything so much better. It is amazing how much better things are.
The primary program is that day (15th), and the theme is eternal families.
Mary gave a talk a while ago in primary about our eternal family, and they came over and asked if she would give that talk again during the program.
I don't pass anything up anymore as a coincidence. Thank you Lord, for showing me you will be thinking of me on that day. My precious daughter will be speaking from her heart about our eternal family. I will probably blubber and weep through the whole thing and totally embarrass myself, but what better way than that to spend a due date that came all too soon.
And I am so happy that I will be spending that day with a new and special gift growing inside of me once more.

Halloween...go time!

We had a wonderful Halloween! For starters, the weather was incredible that day..perfect for the little trick-or-treaters.
We worked out in the morning, and slugged around that afternoon. Then, it was off to a party with a bunch (30+) of our good friends where we ate some yummy soup, salads and breadsticks. Adri was so brave to let us all crash in her house. Thanks Adri!
Then we sent the pack of kids and dads out the door for trick-or-treating. And believe me, it was a BIG pack.

Can you see Mary's bright pink wings?

Yes, there were that many kids. Add two parents for each group of kids, and it makes for a great time and a big party.

I am sure they cleaned out many candy bowls.
The ladies talked it up until the kiddos started arriving back with their "loot." I couldn't believe all of the King Size candy bars the kids had...seriously! Don't worry, Ben and I got them all safely out of the kids buckets and into a secret hiding place. They like the other stuff anyway, right?
When we got back from the party, we hurried and turned on our ghost by the door that yells and screams and lights up. We set out all of our flickering orange candles on the steps, got out the glowing pumpkin and Mary made herself a nice little seat with the candy bucket. We had a bunch of trick-or-treaters stop by, and Mary loved being the one "in charge" of the candy.
Once the bucket was empty, it was lights out, and this pregnant and incredibly tired momma and her sugar filled happy kids were asleep before anyone could say "Boo!"
Yet another awesome Halloween.